Saturday, March 27, 2021

Closet Discoveries

 I've been on a cleaning/reorganizing/purging binge lately and I attacked my hobby closet earlier this week. I opened four boxes from the upper shelves and had a lot of fun. Absolutely the best thing in any of my boxes was this Hank Aaron foldout I got the night he hit homer #712 in the Astrodome in September of 1973.

It opened up to a full four page home run log. There were spaces to fill in  homers 711 thru 715.


I filled in the slots (sorta) beginning with the dinger off Dave Roberts we witnessed that night. Jerry Ruess is the missing victim of #713. Jack Billinghan served up #714 and, of course, #715 was smacked off Al Downing. You can see that I underlined Jack Billingham in the listings. I believe I'd noticed his name a few times and was counting them up. Without Baseball Reference in those days we were on our own. BTW...Billingham gave up five Aaron homers thru the years, not early the top mark. Here are Hank's favorite pitchers:

Don Drysdale 17 homers
Claude Osteen 14
Bob Friend 12
Larry Jackson 10
Don Cardwell 10
Roger Craig 10

There was also a career summary that covered a couple of pages and a statistical summary of his career to that point.

I had no idea that this thing had survuved in my storage boxes. I was happy to see it. I still don't have the little paper certificate we received but finding this was a kick.

This piece is just the tip of the iceberg of what I dug out of these boxes and is currently stacked in my home office/hobby room. I've been busy scanning some really off-the-wall items which willkeep me posting for a while.

Sunday, March 21, 2021

Epic Card Show Fail


OK, so it wasn't that big a deal but yesterday, for the first time I can recall, I attended a card show and walked away with every dime I brought with me. Blame it on my quirky wants, blame it on the explosion of interest in shiny stuff, blame it on the pandemic. But whatever is to blame, it felt weird. 

Coming home empty handed really was the result of all of the above excuses. I don't have much on my want-lists that dealers carry to small shows in the best of times.... '67 High Number SPs, '62 Post Cereal, '75 Topps Minis, and an admittedly odd selection of non-sport sets. The tables yesterday reflected the current trends in collecting. There were plenty of boxes of what I suppose are the kinds of cards people are in line for at Target these days. Display cases were generally filled with 'hits'.

Daryll, the promoter and my friend, did a great job with the show, the first hotel show since last year. COVID protocols were in place and enforced. I should note here that my wife, my mother-in-law, and myself are all fully vaccinated. If not for that I likely wouldn't have gone at all. 

He cut back on tables to give plenty of room for social distancing. But some of that is the reason for my striking out. With fewer tables the dealers cut back on what they brought. I normally spend at least 75% of my time at the hotel shows at Daryll's own tables since he usually has tons of vintage stuff. But he's limited what he brings and only sets up a few tables to give more to the dealers. After all, it's table rentals that pay for the room.

I struck out card-wise but getting to chat with Daryll for a bit made the trip worthwhile. And it was nice to get out of the house for a bit. I stopped at a few stores on the way home and bought binders and other hobby supplies so that made the trip worthwhile.  

Meanwhile, I have a few things that were picked up in my latest SportsLots binge and an eBay buy or two. The '62 Post Cereal McCovey up top brought me to just five remaining. There are also some variations out there which I don't plan to chase. If they fall into my lap I'd take them of course. I also added Juan Marichal. His card is a bit pricey but after a day or so of combing through eBay looking at '67 Topps SPs like the Rod Carew rookie, it doesn't seem so expensive. And it really is as nice as the scan shows. That level of condition is rare for a set that was generally cut from the backs of boxes by 10-year-olds with dull scissors.

Over on Twitter a hobby friend showed a couple of cards from a set I was unaware of, the 1968 Topps/Milton Bradley Hot Rods. I commented on them and did some digging. They reminded my of the George Barris 'Kustoms' that we loved as kids and he was gracious enough to send me the cards. Turns out I had a couple of these stashed away in a box of oddball singles and strays and had completely forgotten about them.

This turned out to be a 66 card set without any rarities so I'll work on it casually for now. I found a dozen or so being sold by an eBay dealer so I'm at 16 or so. Finding them, not cost, is the challenge. That's a much more enjoyable hobby predicament than wondering if nabbing the remaining 26 Topps 67s will take my whole stimulus check. 

There are some back color variations. The story behind these is a bit murky (I've read a couple of conflicting accounts) but I'm not going to worry about any of that. They will make a nice companion to the World On Wheels binder.

Tuesday, March 16, 2021

1975 Topps Minis are Cute


I've been putting together the '75 Topps Mini set pretty casually for quite a while now. I finished the regular set a few years back and had a small stack of the more diminutive alternatives that came in a 'mixed lot/starter lot' I'd purchased. I also had most of the Orioles from long ago. I'm glad I have this one to play with since my '67 set build is stalled due to the silly prices that have been reached in the vintage market. When I get frustrated with folks asking $80 for a battered '67 7th Series SP I can go to SportsLots and toss a half dozen of these in my cart for about fifty cents each.

I've had fun with this as I have picked up the vast majority of what I have in the binder through good old trading. I've swapped dupes with Twitter and blogging friends, old and new. I've been sent some substantial packages in the mail in exchange for my sending dupes from other sets which is satisfying. I always end up with a healthy amount of dupes from most of my set builds because I have a habit of just grabbing lots and hoping for the best. Sometimes it works out, sometimes it doesn't. 

Which reminds me...if you're building the '74 Topps set, get in touch. I can hook you up!

I don't have a lot of completed pages in my '75 Mini binder. The page I posted above is a pretty good one. It has a Hall of Famer, some solid players, some interesting players and a PC guy (Bob Moose). there's also a favorite Oriole of mine, some terrible airbrusing, and a nice cross secetion of card photo styles, posed, action, head shots, etc.  

It's also nicely representative of the colors the set uses. I've noticed that some of the pages in the back of the binder seen to be dominated by the orange/brown combo cards. Maybe that's just happenstance but it's definitely true at this point for me. 

If you have any dupes for this thing you're looking to offload please check out my wantlist over on the right. As i said, I have lots of stuff from 60s and 70s Topps sets I can trade.